Next Generation EO/IR focal plane arrays using nanostructure materials are being developed for a variety
of Defense and Homeland Security Sensor Applications. Several different nanomaterials are being
evaluated for these applications. These include ZnO nanowires, GaN Nanowires and II-VI nanowires,
which have demonstrated large signal to noise ratio as a wide band gap nanostructure material in the UV
band. Similarly, the work is under way using Carbon Nanotubes (CNT) for a high speed detector and focal
plane array as two-dimensional array as bolometer for IR bands of interest, which can be implemented for
the sensors for homeland security applications.
In this paper, we will discuss the sensor design and model predicting performance of an EO/IR focal plane
array and Sensor that can cover the UV to IR bands of interest. The model can provide a robust means for
comparing performance of the EO/IR FPA's and Sensors that can operate in the UV, Visible-NIR (0.4-
1.8μ), SWIR (2.0-2.5μ), MWIR (3-5μ), and LWIR bands (8-14μ). This model can be used as a tool for
predicting performance of nanostructure arrays under development. We will also discuss our results on
growth and characterization of ZnO nanowires and CNT's for the next generation sensor applications. We
also present several approaches for integrated energy harvesting using nanostructure based solar cells and
Nanogenerators that can be used to supplement the energy required for nanostructure based sensors.